- rita aguilar
- Registered: 04-30-2009
- Posts: 2037
...is, in a word, transcendent.
I put this novel up front on my list of holiday reading, and I must say, it is threatening to kick 'Storm of Swords' out of its place as the best novel I've read in 2010. I am 80 pages into it, and simply in awe.
Now, McKitterick's work is kind of hard to compare to Martin's (or, for that matter, Harrison's), because it is science fiction, not fantasy, and the style & approach to story telling is very different. But still. The scope of this man's imagination is right up there with the very best of what I've read.
The first couple of chapters were a little bumpy, as the world was so very foreign to me (knighthawk may not have this problem, as it is a world founded on state-of-the-art computer technology & virtual realities, much like Apoc Gene), but once I learned the ropes there was no putting the book down. The characters are vivid, brutal, and most of all Alone in their collective journey toward self (and perhaps total?) destruction.
McKitterick is an artist in his use of tense and person as he moves from character to character. For the most part, the book is written in third person past, but there is one character who always appears in present tense. And another evil psychotic whose every chapter is in second person, which makes YOU the evil psycho of the story (except not really, because evil psycho keeps refering to events in his personal history of which the reader has no knowledge, which makes the reader feel even more disoriented and psychotic...it's quite a trip, let me tell you...) And then, there's a super AI computer on the verge of consciousness, and going "mad" because of it, and so her/his/its scenes flip from one sentence to the other between first, second and third person. So, in addition to just really enjoying the story, I'm learning a lot about all the different ways that a story can be told, and a character portrayed.
Oh, and there is this wonderful, subtle dark humor laced throughout that makes you smile in unexpected moments.
All this to say...Put this one on your list, guys. You won't regret it. McKitterick's novel is a brilliant read.